The Newtown Pentacle

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Posts Tagged ‘114th Precinct

muffled conversation

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There was quite a hullabaloo, here in Astoria.

– photo by Mitch Waxman

One received a text from a neighbor on the night of October 30th that there had been a vehicle collision involving the local gendarmes here in Astoria, so I grabbed the camera and headed down to take a look at what happened.

The NYPD unit involved was from the local precinct, the 114,  and they had collided – at speed- with a civilian vehicle at the intersection of 45th street here on Broadway.

– photo by Mitch Waxman

Given that I’m a “yenta” and the whole neighborhood knows it, the neighbors began relating the story to me.

Apparently, the NYPD unit was in one of those big hurries that they periodically display, the kind when they don’t have their sirens or lights on. My understanding is that this is procedure when they’re trying to catch someone surreptitiously by sneaking up on them, or they’re enroute to assist another officer who is in a dicey situation.

Observationally, when Cops blow a light just cause they want to, they perform what could be best described as a rolling stop while doing so. They can also park pretty much anywhere they want to, and I see both as perks.

– photo by Mitch Waxman

One of the local Greeks informed me that he had witnessed the incident. The cops were moving through a red light at the corner of 45th street and Broadway at a considerable velocity when they contacted the front end of a sedan which was proceeding at speed through the green light. They tore the front end of the civilian car up, but neither car’s occupants were seriously hurt. That’s what the Greek guy said.

– photo by Mitch Waxman

That’s the bumper of the sedan, which was being operated by a fairly young guy who had two passengers with him. They were instructed to park around the corner, and seemed – to me at least – as quite anxious. On Broadway itself, there were multiple NYPD people investigating the event. There were ambulances, looking loo civilians like me, and the usual emergency crew that the City’s got.

Of course the three kids were anxious, how would you feel if you had just rammed a cop car?

– photo by Mitch Waxman

I ran into a couple of officers from the 114 a couple of days later (long story) and inquired as to the condition and health of their comrades. They informed that the two officers in the unit were fine, but had taken a couple of days off to recuperate nevertheless. No word on the three kids, however.

My personal belief is that all five participants in the accident probably had to go shopping for new underwear.


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Written by Mitch Waxman

November 11, 2016 at 11:00 am

states suggested

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Drunkard of the week.

– photo by Mitch Waxman

Back to the Kvetching, lords and ladies, and things that are definitively not alright.

This fellow spent a lovely afternoon dozing in the sun, in an obviously inebriate state, at the corner of 41st and Broadway in front of the Loyal order of Moose building. He was sleeping one off, by all appearances. This shot was captured around 6:45 in the evening, but I had spotted him in the same spot earlier in the day, around 2 p.m. Nearly five hours.

– photo by Mitch Waxman

During the late afternoon, and into the early evening, vast numbers of people walked by this man. Mothers and children, old ladies and new immigrants took in the spectacle as they passed by. Hundreds of automobiles stopped at the red light on the corner, with this napping fellow in plain sight and actually illuminated by a setting sun. How many of those cars, I wonder, were driven by the Police?

How is this oft observed behavior in the public space OK, and shouldn’t some member of the Gendarmé have checked to see if this guy was dead or alive?

– photo by Mitch Waxman

The fellow singled out in today’s post is part of a small population of inebriated gentlemen who frequent the Steinway and Broadway intersection. A small population of junkies also seem to be favoring the corner of late, with many encamping themselves at the Library. Anybody who lives hereabouts will tell you this, yet, few complain or “kvetch” about it.

“What can you do about it? Don’t start trouble”– that’s the Astoria motto.

– photo by Mitch Waxman

A shot from around 7:50 or so, when I was making my way back home. This guy actually gets more sleep than I do, by all appearances, and he remained unmolested by the Police or the people in the shops for more than 5 hours. All the while in public view from an intersection. There was a guy sleeping around 2 on the opposite corner, but he had removed himself by the time I came through around 6:45.

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This weekend-

Sunday, August 3rd, Kill Van Kull Walking Tour
With Brooklyn Brainery, click here for tickets and more info.

Written by Mitch Waxman

August 1, 2014 at 2:58 pm

extreme aspirations

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– photo by Mitch Waxman

Obligation had carried me away from Astoria yesterday, and upon my return, I discovered this scene playing out. A police cruiser, taxi, and two other vehicles had been smashed. I checked with one of the officers on the scene, who told me that it seemed as if his compatriots who were in the wreck were going to be OK. I missed all the action, apparently.

Additional inquiries regarding the event were offered to the multitudes of neighbors milling about, and one of them volunteered to guest blog.

– photo by Mitch Waxman

The following text was received from today’s guest blogger- a member of our local gentry, a yenta, and itinerant area wag who wishes to be called Mr. Blogovich.

Blogovich is a respectably sturdy Croat of long neighborhood affiliation and good reputation, despite his bizarre and unconventional manner of dress. His comments and observations follow in italics:

“Pieced together from many perspectives:

The police car came into the intersection doing 80-100, sirens and lights going.

It clipped the dip in the street, back right tire probably popping and locking there.

– photo by Mitch Waxman

It went down about 200-300 feet, fishtailed to the right, its back right bumper slapping into the bumper of the white Nissan Sentra.

Impact and momentum pushed it to the left side of the street. It went about 30 feet to impact with a black SUV with cement bags in its back hatch.

This lifted the black SUV up a bit and piled it directly into a taxi cab that was parked in front of it, with a spray of cement powder flying everywhere.

Three very lucky people were standing about 6 feet from the place of initial impact. A foot worth of tilt to the left and the cop car would have plowed into them and taken them out.

– photo by Mr. Blogovich

Directly after the impact with the black SUV the back end of the cop car swerved to the left and impacted with the black iron fence next to XXXXX’s house.

It was at this point I booked down the street shirtless.

I got there in time to see the two cops staggering slightly out of the car. The airbags deployed. I shouted, “Are you guys okay?”

The driving officer immediately asked, “Did anyone see the little girl I swerved for?” or some such.

Why did he not ask, “Is the little girl alright?”

– photo by Mr. Blogovich

Oil was cascading out of the bottom. The car was still on. A bystander told the passenger cop to turn the motor off.

I offered them water if needed, asked them if they were ok. The driving officer said, ” I’ll be okay if I get a witness who saw the little girl.”

The response sirens were almost immediate. Not ten seconds after I arrived on the scene.

The response was IMMENSE.

  • Conservative estimates:
  • 8 cop cars, all told.
  • 4 fire trucks.
  • 4-5 ambulances. These are not counting the response vehicles that didn’t even turn down the street.

– photo by Mitch Waxman

The street became congested with the response team.

Cops pulled all tools and gear out of the car. The two cops service belts were stored away.

All the owners of each vehicle were interviewed.

Oddly, at least initially, the three main witnesses who could have nearly died, were not.”

Wow, says a humble narrator. Thanks to Mr. Blogovich for all the details, and use of his photos.

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Click for details on Mitch Waxman’s
Upcoming boat tours of Newtown Creek

July 22nd, 2012 NEXT SUNDAY- There are Just a few tickets left, don’t miss out

Working Harbor Committee Newtown Creek Boat Tour

Written by Mitch Waxman

July 18, 2012 at 2:27 am

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